KURDISH NEWS WEEKLY BRIEFING, 1 – 7 JULY 2017

NEWS
1. Thousands take to the streets in Hamburg against the G-20 Summit
2. Ahmet Türk: The Justice March should turn into a united struggle
3. Kurdish leader Demirtaş prosecuted on charge of humiliating Erdogan’s government, Turkish army
4. International delegation denied attendance in Yüksekdağ’s hearing
5. German intelligence: PKK is fighting ISIS
6. “Erdoğan is responsible for the assassination plans in Germany”
7. Jagland: ECHR launched efforts for jailed journalists in Turkey
8. PYD says Kurds determined to expel Turkish forces from northern Syria
9. Thousands of Kurds protest against Turkish attacks on Afrin town
10. Clashes with Turkey likely in days: Syrian Kurdish militants
11. Tens of thousands in Syria protest expected Turkey attack
12. “We will never leave our lands to the grandsons of the Ottomans”
13. Turkish massacre in Efrîn: 3 civilians killed, 8 others wounded
14. Turkish, FSA shelling kills mother and two children, critically injures 7 in Shahba region

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. EU parliament votes to halt accession talks with Turkey
2. The Kurds Under Erdogan’s Tyrannical Governance
3. Does the US have answer for Turkish threats against Syrian Kurds?
4. Ankara’s offer to Moscow: Give us Afrin for Idlib
5. Statement regarding the situation of media freedom in Turkey
6. MARGARET OWEN: ROJAVA AS HOME TO OVER TWO MILLION IDPS
7. Feminist Dissent Issue 2, a special issue on ‘Gender and Fundamentalisms’ co-edited by Nira Yuval-Davis and Nadje Al-Ali
8. The RealNews Network: Syria, Anarchism & Visiting Rojava
9. Kobane Calling

ACTION, CAMPAIGNS
1. STATEMENT OF THE DELEGATION TO OBSERVE FIRST HEARING OF HDP CO-CHAIR FIGEN YUKSEKDAG.
2. Amnesty International UK – TURKEY: FREE AMNESTY DIRECTOR IDIL ESER
3. TURKEY: HUNDREDS AT IMMINENT RISK OF FORCED EVICTION
4. CALL FOR TARGETED ACADEMIC BOYCOTT OF TURKEY

EVENTS
1. Who is Beating Back ISIS in Syria?
2. Kurdish Cultural Festival, 30 July 2017 in Quorn
———————————–
NEWS
1. Thousands take to the streets in Hamburg against the G-20 Summit7 July/ANF News
Tens of thousands of people gathered in Hamburg, Germany took to the streets to protest the G-20 Summit. Dozens were injured when the police attacked the protesters and many were detained. The demonstrations continued into the early morning hours.
https://anfenglish.com/news/thousands-take-to-the-streets-in-hamburg-against-the-g-20-summit-20831

2. Ahmet Türk: The Justice March should turn into a united struggle
7 July/ANF News
Tens of thousands of people gathered in Hamburg, Germany took to the streets to protest the G-20 Summit. Dozens were injured when the police attacked the protesters and many were detained. The demonstrations continued into the early morning hours.
https://anfenglish.com/news/thousands-take-to-the-streets-in-hamburg-against-the-g-20-summit-20831

2. Ahmet Türk: The Justice March should turn into a united struggle
5 July/ANF News
Ahmet Türk stated that the ustice March is a valuable initiative and needs to be followed with a fervency appealing to for 80 million people. Türk said they hope this initiative would turn into a united struggle
https://anfenglish.com/news/ahmet-tuerk-the-justice-march-should-turn-into-a-united-struggle-20799

3. Kurdish leader Demirtaş prosecuted on charge of humiliating Erdogan’s government, Turkish army
7 July/ ARA News
After 8 months of imprisonment by the Turkish authorities, the leader of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Selahattin Demirtaş is appearing in Ankara court on Friday for the third hearing of his lawsuit.
http://aranews.net/2017/07/kurdish-leader-demirtas-prosecuted-on-charge-of-humiliating-erdogans-government-turkish-army/

4. International delegation denied attendance in Yüksekdağ’s hearing
4 July/ANF News
The first hearing of the main case of Figen Yüksekdağ has begun at Ankara 16th Heavy Penal Court. Yüksekdağ was met with slogans in the hearing room.
https://anfenglish.com/news/international-delegation-denied-attendance-in-yueksekdag-s-hearing-20793

5. German intelligence: PKK is fighting ISIS
6 July/ANF News
The German intelligence agency refused claims by Minister Gabriel that “PKK is involved with narcotics trafficking and extortion”, stating that PKK raises funds through donations and sales of publications, and a portion of the funds go to fighting ISIS.
https://anfenglish.com/news/german-intelligence-pkk-is-fighting-isis-20819

6. “Erdoğan is responsible for the assassination plans in Germany”
4 July/ANF News
Representatives from Kurdish institutions held a press conference in the Hamburg State Parliament and announced that a man named Mustafa Karataş is acting on behalf of MİT to plan attacks against them.
https://anfenglish.com/news/erdogan-is-responsible-for-the-assassination-plans-in-germany-20794

7. Jagland: ECHR launched efforts for jailed journalists in Turkey
28 june/ANF News
Council of Europe Secretary General Jagland answered HDP Deputy Chairperson Filiz Kerestecioğlu’s question and, pointing out the arrests, said: “Journalists and members of parliament are priority groups for the Council of Europe.”
https://anfenglish.com/news/jagland-echr-launched-efforts-for-jailed-journalists-in-turkey-20690

8. PYD says Kurds determined to expel Turkish forces from northern Syria
7 July/ ARA News
The Kurdish Democratic Union Party in Syria (PYD) said they will expel the Turkish military and Turkey-backed groups from northern Syria. This comes after Turkey threatened to attack The Kurdish district of Afrin (Efrîn) northwest of Aleppo.
http://www.aranews.net/2017/07/pyd-says-kurds-determined-to-expel-turkish-forces-from-northern-syria/
9. Thousands of Kurds protest against Turkish attacks on Afrin town
6 July/ARA News
Thousands of Kurdish citizens took to the street in Afrin district in Syria’s northwestern Aleppo province on Wednesday, protesting the Turkish offensive against the area.
http://www.aranews.net/2017/07/thousands-of-kurds-protest-against-turkish-attacks-on-afrin-town/

10. Clashes with Turkey likely in days: Syrian Kurdish militants
6 July/Press TV
The head of a US-backed Kurdish militant group fighting in Syria says a confrontation is likely “within days” between his fighters and the Turkish forces recently deployed to Syria’s Aleppo Province.
http://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2017/07/06/527577/Syria-YPG-Turkish-forces-confrontation-Sipan-Hemo

11. Tens of thousands in Syria protest expected Turkey attack
5 July/Mail Online
Tens of thousands of people protested on Wednesday in a town in northern Syria against Turkey, as speculation mounts it is planning to attack the Kurdish-held border region.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-4668878/Tens-thousands-Syria-protest-expected-Turkey-attack.html

12. “We will never leave our lands to the grandsons of the Ottomans”
4 July/ANF English
Revolutionary Forces General Commander stressed that: “Grandsons of the Ottomans shouldn’t hope for too much, they won’t rest easy in Rojava for even one day. We will never leave our lands to them.”
https://anfenglish.com/news/we-will-never-leave-our-lands-to-the-grandsons-of-the-ottomans-20786

13. Turkish massacre in Efrîn: 3 civilians killed, 8 others wounded
4 July/ypg Rojava
The invading Turkish army and allied gangs attacked the liberated villages in Shehba and Efrîn, Rojava the night before.
https://www.ypgrojava.org/Turkish-massacre-in-Efrîn%3A-3-civilians-killed%2C-8-others-wounded

14. Turkish, FSA shelling kills mother and two children, critically injures 7 in Shahba region
Indiscriminate shelling by Turkish forces and Free Syrian Army militants under Ankara’s command in Rojava-Northern Syria’s Shahba countryside resulted in the death of 3 civilians, a mother and her two children, on Monday night.
https://www.ypgrojava.org/Turkish%2C-FSA-shelling-kills-mother-and-two-children%2C-critically-injures-7-in-Shahba-region

OPINION, COMMENTARY, ANALYSIS
1. EU parliament votes to halt accession talks with Turkey
6 July/Al Monitor
The European Parliament voted July 6 to suspend accession negotiations with Turkey. According to Reuters, the legislative body of the European Union debated the report by Turkey rapporteur and fellow parliamentarian Kati Piri and called “on the Commission and the member states … to formally suspend the accession negotiations with Turkey without delay if the constitutional reform package is implemented unchanged.” Turkey’s April 16 constitutional referendum is set to grant President Recep Tayyip Erdogan powers that will make him as powerful as (if not more powerful than) the Turkish parliament.
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/07/eu-parliament-votes-end-turkey-negotiations.html#ixzz4m4ueZ9qG

2. The Kurds Under Erdogan’s Tyrannical Governance
7 May/Huffington Post
Tens of thousands have been killed over 40 years of bloodletting between Turkish forces and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), and tragically there seems to be no end in sight. In May 2016, President Erdogan stated that military operations against the PKK will continue until “the very last rebel is killed.” What is alarming about Erdogan’s statement is that he still believes he can solve the conflict through brutal force. Erdogan does not understand that he cannot wish the Kurdish problem away—a problem that will continue to haunt him and the country for countless more decades unless a solution is found that respects their cultural and fundamental human rights.
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/the-kurds-under-erdogans-tyrannical-governance_us_595cef79e4b0c85b96c66561

3. Does the US have answer for Turkish threats against Syrian Kurds?
2 July/Al Monitor
Turkish military actions against US-allied Syrian Kurdish forces could threaten to upend plans for unseating the Islamic State (IS) in Raqqa, Syria, and for what comes next.
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/07/us-answer-turkey-threats-syria-kurds-hamas-iran-hezbollah.html#ixzz4lx0PQGxO

4. Ankara’s offer to Moscow: Give us Afrin for Idlib
3 July/Al Monitor
Tension is escalating rapidly west of the Euphrates River, especially in the area of Syria’s Afrin canton controlled by the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), and at Idlib, controlled by a motley collection of outfits mostly backed by Turkey.
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2017/06/turkey-russia-offer-moscow-idlib-in-return-for-afrin.html#ixzz4lwvQ6mir

5. Statement regarding the situation of media freedom in Turkey
26 June/European Federation of Journalists
Following the specific request of the delegates at the Annual Meeting held in Bucharest on 18-19 May 2017 asking for a strong position of the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the Steering Committee issued the following statement regarding the situation of media freedom in Turkey :
http://europeanjournalists.org/blog/2017/06/26/statement-regarding-the-situation-of-media-freedom-in-turkey/

6. MARGARET OWEN: ROJAVA AS HOME TO OVER TWO MILLION IDPS
7 July/Peace in Kurdistan Campaign
The present dire situation of over two million internally displaced people (IDPs) in Rojava, (refugees in all but name), abandoned by the UN, the US and the EU is a scandal and is a “preventable catastrophe”. I am describing a humanitarian disaster in Northern Syria that could and should be alleviated providing that humanitarian aid is delivered. It is required now and urgently.
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/07/07/rojava-as-home-to-over-two-million-idps/

7. Feminist Dissent Issue 2, a special issue on ‘Gender and Fundamentalisms’ co-edited by Nira Yuval-Davis and Nadje Al-Ali
http://journals.warwick.ac.uk/index.php/feministdissent/index

8. The RealNews Network: Syria, Anarchism & Visiting Rojava
1 July/The Real News
In the last part of Real Media’s interview, a special discussion with
anthropologist David Graeber
http://therealnews.com/t2/story:19461:Real-Media%3A-Syria%2C-Anarchism-%26-Visiting-Rojava

9. Kobane Calling
A short graphic novel telling the story of cartoon artist Zerocalcare’s trip to Bakur during the battle for Kobane in Rojava in 2014.
https://pmpress.org.uk/product/kobane-calling/

ACTION, CAMPAIGNS
1. STATEMENT OF THE DELEGATION TO OBSERVE FIRST HEARING OF HDP CO-CHAIR FIGEN YUKSEKDAG.
7 July/Peace in Kurdistan Campaign
A delegation of politicians and lawyers from the UK attempted to observe the first hearing in the trial on terrorism related charges of Figen Yuksekdag, the former Co-Chair of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) in Ankara on 4 July 2017. The delegation was subjected to police harassment throughout the day and eventually denied entry to the hearing in breach of well-established international legal principles.
The delegation is deeply concerned that Ms Yuksekdag will not receive a fair trial given the clear influence of the executive on the proceedings and the consequent inability of the tribunal to take independent decisions in the course of the trial.
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/07/07/statement-of-the-delegation-to-observe-first-hearing-of-hdp-co-chair-figen-yuksekdag/

2. Amnesty International UK – TURKEY: FREE AMNESTY DIRECTOR IDIL ESER
5 July/ Amnesty International
Idil Eser, along with seven other human rights defenders and two trainers were attending a routine digital security and information management workshop in a hotel in Büyükada, Istanbul when the authorities burst in and detained them without giving a reason. The owner of the hotel was also detained.
https://www.amnesty.org.uk/actions/turkey-free-amnesty-director-idil-eser?from=issue&utm_source=Email&utm_medium=Mass&utm_campaign=Human_Rights&utm_content=Turkey_director_general&utm_campaign=Turkey_director_general&utm_source=emailCampaign&utm_content=&utm_medium=email

3. TURKEY: HUNDREDS AT IMMINENT RISK OF FORCED EVICTION
29 June/Amnesty International
Hundreds of residents in neighbourhoods of the Sur district in Diyarbakır province, south eastern Turkey, are at imminent risk of forced eviction. For over a month now, their water and electricity supplies have been cut off, in an apparent attempt to force them out. They have not been adequately consulted or compensated.
https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/eur44/6626/2017/en/?utm_source=CleverReach&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Nieuwsbrief+-+Newsletter+Koerdisch+Instituut+2017%2F38&utm_content=Mailing_6857252

4. CALL FOR TARGETED ACADEMIC BOYCOTT OF TURKEY
7 June/Academic Boycott of Turkey
In January 2016, 2,212 academics working in or researching on Turkey signed a declaration calling on the Turkish government to end the war in the Kurdish region, seek a peaceful resolution of the decades-long Kurdish question, and allow international observers to monitor the situation in Kurdish towns and cities destroyed by security forces. Since then, the signatories, who came to be known as Academics for Peace, have been subjected to vindictive and punitive attacks ordered by the president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and implemented through joint effort by the government and the higher education establishment.
https://academicboycottofturkey.wordpress.com

EVENTS
1. Who is Beating Back ISIS in Syria?
On 12 July, David’s bookshop, Letchword Garden City
Predominantly Kurdish defence forces, led equally by women and men commanders, are in the forefront of the fight against ISIS. Unnoticed by most of the world and its media, in the middle of a war zone, in Rojava Northern Syria, a radical secular experiment in class and race equality and direct democracy with women in the driving seat is taking place. It could provide a model of governance for the rest of Syria but are its ideas too radical for both its allies and its enemies?
https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/06/16/whos-beating-back-isis-in-syria/ <https://peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/2017/06/16/whos-beating-back-isis-in-syria/>

2. Kurdish Cultural Festival, 30 July 2017 in Quorn
A great FREE event for all the family, with children’s activities, organised by the General Federation of Trade Unions, Freedom for Ocalan Campaign, Peace in Kurdistan, Kurdish People’s Assembly UK, Kurdish Youth Movement and KNK (Kurdish National Congress) UK
https://www.evensi.uk/kurdish-cultural-festival-quorn-grange-hotel/210585748 <https://www.evensi.uk/kurdish-cultural-festival-quorn-grange-hotel/210585748>

Peace in Kurdistan
Campaign for a political solution of the Kurdish Question
Email: estella24@tiscali.co.uk
http://www.peaceinkurdistancampaign.com 
Contacts Estella Schmid 020 7586 5892 & Melanie Gingell – Tel: 020 7272 7890  Fax: 020 7263 0596
Patrons: Lord Rea, Lord Dholakia, Baroness Sarah Ludford, Jill Evans MEP, Jean Lambert MEP,Julie Ward MEP, Jeremy Corbyn MP, Hywel Williams MP, Kate Osamor MP, Elfyn Llwyd, Dafydd Iwan, Former President Plaid Cymru, Sinn Fein MLA Conor Murphy, John Austin, Christine Blower, NUT International Secretary,  Simon Dubbins, UNITE International Director, Doug Nicholls, General Secretary, General Federations of Trade Unions, Bruce Kent, Gareth Peirce, Julie Christie, Noam Chomsky, James Kelman, Margaret Owen OBE, Prof Mary Davis, Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley, Mark Thomas, Nick Hildyard, Stephen Smellie, Derek Wall, Melanie Gingell, Steve Sweeney

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